253 Municipal Drive Thorndale, PA 19372
February 11, 2021 Minutes
Attendance: Paul Mullin-President (Absent), Jane Kennedy-Vice President, Joshua Young-Commissioner, Lorraine Tindaro-Commissioner, Mark Evans-Commissioner, Kristen Denne-Township Manager/Secretary, Lisa Swan-Finance Director (Absent), Bryan Kulakowsky-Township Engineer (Absent), Kristin Camp-Township Solicitor (Absent), and Denise Miller-Assistant Township Secretary.
Commissioner Kennedy called the virtual Zoom meeting to order at 7:30 PM, and called for the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.
Commissioner Evans Updates
I’d like to ask for a moment of silence to honor and remember the two Caln residents who lost their lives to COVID-19 (“COVID”) in the last 14 days, and all 29 neighbors that have been lost since this COVID nightmare began.
Welcome everyone, thank you for joining us. Our meetings are “Neutral Ground”, a place to hear and be heard.
We have a light agenda this evening, and I’m sure everyone is as tired as I am from shoveling snow, so I’ll keep this short for a change.
- Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow… alright, we got our wish, albeit a little late for the holidays. Enough already! In the meantime, you can give our dedicated snow plow drivers a break by keeping your cars off the streets when it snows. It’s hard enough to maneuver one of those plows without having to weave in and out to avoid parked cars. Driveways are to park in, and parkways are to drive on, but that’s another story. We should consider ourselves lucky to have driveways, in New York City they just plowed our cars under, and it would take months before you could get your car out.
- Our local businesses continue to struggle for survival as the pandemic rages on. Please support them any way you can – by ordering takeout, safely dining in, or simply leaving a larger tip than you normally would. Hey, Valentine’s Day take out from your favorite local eatery sounds like a great idea to me!
- Our first “Coffee with the Commissioners” virtual Town hall of 2021 will be in early March, exact date to be determined. At the moment, we’re waiting to confirm a special guest. Once that’s all set, we’ll let you know the date. Truly look forward to it.
- Spackman Farm Barn Roof – I don’t have an update on the status, and Bryan Kulakowsky is not with us this evening. Again, it’s just a matter of getting the proper paperwork back. We should have something to report at our next meeting.
- We are still on the hunt for a few willing residents to join our Commissions. I promise, there is a real “can do” feeling amongst our volunteers, and in the last 13 months our Commissions have accomplished so much. But there is still so much to be done. Come and join us. There’s no better way to feel good about your township than by being a part of the solution.
- COVID vaccine distribution is still slower than hoped for, and Chester County remains in stage 1A, 1A includes:
- Long-term care facility residents
- Health care personnel
- Persons not directly involved in patient care but potentially exposed to infectious material
- Persons ages 65 and older
- Persons ages 16-64 with high-risk conditions
We will keep you posted as more of the population becomes eligible.
Did somebody mention COVID? Again, not enough people are wearing masks in public places, which is the leading cause of spread of the infection. I had a conversation the other day with a friend who works as a Hospice nurse. She was tearing up behind her mask as she described how difficult the last 10 months have been for her. She’s been working 7-days a week, and most of her patient’s deaths have been COVID related. You see, COVID doesn’t just effect the patient, it effects everyone in their universe – family, friends, health care workers, ambulance drivers, morticians, etc… Mask wearing is not a political statement, it a sign of respect for your brothers and sisters in this thing called life.
JUST THE NUMBERS:
On January 27, 2021 we had 808 cases, we now have 862. So we actually added fewer cases then in the previous 2 weeks, the first time new positives had gone down since the fall. But fatalities are trending up. And as I mentioned early we also lost another two of our neighbors to COVID, our death toll now stands at 29.
Since January 27, 2021 Chester County has added over 1,286 new positive cases, with 19 new deaths. So, like us, their positives are trending down while fatalities are on the rise. Caln Township continues to have the 6th highest number of cases in the county, with the 7th highest number of deaths.
We need to do better – for each other. And we can do better. Please, take the necessary steps to stop the spread. Put love for your neighbor before self-interest, and be a part of the solution.
Commissioner Kennedy noted that you must register at Chester County, Rite Aid or Brandywine Hospital-Tower Health in order to receive the COVID vaccine there. She also encouraged everyone to continue to wear masks.
Commissioner Kennedy thanked the Public Works Department for their outstanding job on keeping the roads safe.
Citizens to be Heard
Mark DeYoung of 20 Beaver Run Road noted that Commissioner Young should take down his political signs in his background immediately. He noted that a “Zoom” meeting is just like a Board meeting in person. Commissioner Young noted that this is his home office, and he has political signs all over. He will talk with the Board, and take it under advisement.
Commissioner Evans noted that the Board will take Mr. DeYoung’s comments under consideration as well as review the laws, and report back with their findings at the next meeting.
Licia Carini of 103 Ayerwood Drive noted that she felt super uncomfortable as a citizen, and it felt like an “assault”. She also noted that this comment should have been done “off line” and not at a public meeting.
Ashlee Dadd of 4331 Edges Mill Road noted that she is speaking on behalf of herself, her deceased husband, and their community. Ms. Dadd noted that she has several concerns regarding the “Dwell” Development.
Ms. Dadd noted that one of her concerns is their wells. Ms. Dadd noted that she will get her well tested before the development is constructed to make sure she keeps the same water quality.
Ms. Dadd asked if an Environmental Impact Assessment was done. She noted that she would like to keep the area rural.
Ms. Dadd noted that people will not know the property lines and trespass onto their properties. She would like a buffer of trees or maybe a fence to buffer their properties.
Ms. Dadd also has concerns with the dog park that borders their properties. She asked if it could be relocated on the area where the pipeline is.
Commissioner Evans offered his condolences on the death of her husband.
Commissioner Evans noted that three of the five present Board Members were not on the board at the time this development was approved. He noted that he also has concerns with the wells, and noted that it would be worth looking into the Special Protection Watershed.
Ms. Denne noted that the Township cannot force a developer to make changes to an already approved plan. She noted that the Developer would have to go through a legal process to change an already approved plan. She directed Ms. Dadd to the Developer to discuss her questions and concerns on the walking trail and Dog Park, and to the County Health Department at 610-344-6688 to discuss her well concerns.
Commissioner Young noted that he does not have the plans in front of him however, there may be a significant buffer left along the property lines.
Mark DeYoung of 20 Beaver Run Road noted that his comments regarding Commissioner Young’s political signs were not meant to be hurtful. He noted that he emailed Commissioner Mullin the day after the January 28 meeting because he wanted to be anonymous, and not bring it to a public meeting.
Township Solicitor – Ms. Camp
Township Engineer – Mr. Kulakowsky
Township Manager – Ms. Denne
Letter of Support for the Willows at Valley Run – PHFA Application – Presented Under “Additional Business”.
Status of Structure at 11 Brooks Lane – Presented under “Additional Business”.
Ordinances and Resolutions for Consideration
Resolution 2021-05 A Resolution Approving an Agreement with William Schew to Allow for the Deputization of Caln Township to perform all Duties Required for Tax Collection Services – Commissioner Kennedy entertained a motion approving an agreement with William Schew to allow for the deputization of Caln Township to perform all duties required for tax collection services. Moved by Commissioner Young and seconded by Commissioner Tindaro. Vote passed 4-0.
An Ordinance of the Caln Township Board of Commissioners Amending Caln Township’s Code of Ordinances, Part I Administrative Legislation, Chapter 48 Tax Collector, Article II Compensation, Section 48.3 Compensation of Tax Collector – Ms. Denne noted that before an election the Board of Commissioners has to determine the compensation for elected officials before ballots are printed. This particular ordinance is for the Tax Collector.
Ms. Denne noted that the Board of Commissioners follow the first class township according to population.
Commissioner Evans asked if this ordinance is lowering the compensation. Ms. Denne replied that it is lowering the compensation.
Commissioner Kennedy entertained a motion to adopt the amended ordinance of the Caln Township Board of Commissioners Amending Caln Township’s Code of Ordinances, Part I Administrative Legislation, Chapter 48 Tax Collector, Article II Compensation, Section 48.3 Compensation of Tax Collector. Commissioner Kennedy called for public comment. There were none. Moved by Commissioner Evans and seconded by Commissioner Tindaro. Vote passed 4-0.
An Ordinance of the Commissioners of Caln Township Chester County, Pennsylvania Amending The Code of Ordinances of Caln Township Specifically Part II General Legislation, Article V Snow and Ice Emergencies, Chapter 149 Vehicles and Traffic, Section 149-40(B) Parking Prohibited on Certain Streets – Commissioner Kennedy asked if there will be new signage for these roads. Ms. Denne noted that the original streets already have signage, and these roads will have signage. Ms. Denne also noted that signage has to be in place before you can impose violations.
Commissioner Evans asked if this ordinance is just during a snow emergency. Commissioner Kennedy noted that it is for snow and ice emergencies.
Commissioner Kennedy asked if there will be new signage. Ms. Denne replied that the other roads have already been posted, and these will be posted. Ms. Denne also noted that the roads have to be posed in order to enforce the ordinance. [AS1]
Commissioner Kennedy asked if the residents on these streets will be notified by mail. Ms. Denne noted that the signs are really clear. Ms. Denne also noted that Ms. Swan has posted this information on the Township website, Facebook and ReadyChesco.
Commissioner Kennedy entertained a motion to adopt an ordinance of the Commissioners of Caln Township Chester County, Pennsylvania Amending The Code of Ordinances of Caln Township Specifically Part II General Legislation, Article V Snow and Ice Emergencies, Chapter 149 Vehicles and Traffic, Section 149-40(B) Parking Prohibited on Certain Streets. Moved by Commissioner Tindaro and seconded by Commissioner Evans. Vote passed 4-0.
Resolution 2021-06 A Resolution Ratifying the Declaration of a Snow Emergency within the Township Limits and Streets Identified in Chapter 149 of the Township Code – Commissioner Evans asked if those who do not adhere to this ordinance will be towed. Ms. Denne noted that they will be ticketed or towed. She also noted that the vehicle will be towed if it is a safety issue.
Commissioner Evans entertained a motion adopting Resolution 2021-06 ratifying the declaration of a snow emergency within the Township limits and streets identified in Chapter 149 of the Township Code. Commissioner Kennedy called for public comment. There were none. Moved by Commissioner Young and second by Commissioner Tindaro. Vote passed 4-0.
Ms. Denne noted that she will send an alert to the Board Members letting them know that we are looking at the snow emergency, then the Board will give her preliminary authorization, and then we will ratify it at a meeting.
Resolution 2021-03 A Resolution Designating the 2021 Response Territories for Emergency Service in Caln Township (TABLED 01/28/2021) – Ms. Miller asked if we were skipping this resolution. Ms. Denne noted that it stays on the agenda as a place holder until a Board Member makes a motion.
Minutes to Approve
Motion to Approve the January 28, 2021 Board of Commissioners Minutes – Commissioner Tindaro noted a correction to change “Washing” to “Washington”.
Commissioner Kennedy entertained a motion to approve the January 28, 2021 Board of Commissioners minutes, with Commissioner Tindaro’s noted correction. Moved by Commissioner Tindaro and seconded by Commissioner Young. Vote passed 4-0.
Finance Department Ms. Swan
Finance Report – N/A
Motion of approval for General Checks 46076-46121 – Commissioner Kennedy entertained a motion to approve general checks 46076-46121. Moved by Commissioner Tindaro and seconded by Commissioner Young. Vote passed 4-0.
Boards and Commissions Updates – Summary by Applicable Board Liaison – January
Parks and Recreation – Commissioner Young noted that there are no meetings scheduled in January or February.
COG – Commissioner Kennedy noted that they held a meeting on February 3, 2021 where Cory Trego from the Chester County Water Resource Committee presented their plan for working with Municipalities on upgrading their procedures and protocols for the Water Authority.
Commissioner Kennedy noted that they are working on forming an “Animal Control” Network. Also, discussed was the equipment share list
Municipal Authority – N/A
DARA – N/A
Fire Board – Commissioner Young noted that they are trying to set a meeting for the first quarter. He also noted that the Fire Board sent their agreement to the Township, and they are awaiting their response.
Historical Commission – Commissioner Tindaro noted that she attended the Memorial for Lois Demchak on January 30, 2021. Ms. Demchack was the Co-founder of the preschool group CCD at Saint Cecilia’s School where she taught for eighteen years. In 1984 she received the highest award from the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.
Commissioner Tindaro noted discussions with Cathleen Hood from the Chester County Preservation Network.
Mark Evans noted that Bob Wise will attend the next Historical Commission meeting. He also noted that they are awaiting the new revised contract for the Spackman Farm Reroof project.
Commissioner Evans noted that as part of the Historical Sub Committee Ms. Jennings and Ms. Callaghan are working on language for a proposed new historic ordinance to be part of the new zoning update.
Commissioner Evans noted that they discussed the Coatesville Area School District Historic Preservation Program and voted and agreed that the Historical Commission would send a letter of support to the new Superintendent, Mr. Tomas Hanna. Ms. Coughlan has written a letter for the Township to sign. Commissioner Evans noted that the kids would like to continue to use the Gardner-Behle House.
Commissioner Evans noted that they discussed the demolition permit for the VA Hospital, and realized that there is nothing they can do about it because it is Federal Land.
Commissioner Evans noted that they also discussing doing a Historic Inventory Map.
Lincoln Highway – Commissioner Young noted that they continue to work with the Zoning Task Force, and their next meeting will be focused on Lincoln Highway.
Ms. Denne noted that the two ordinances on the agenda tonight are the first reads and after this, they will be put out for advertisement. The final adoption of the ordinances will be at the February 25, 2021 meeting.
Letter of Support for the Willows at Valley Run – PHFA Application – Ms. Denne noted that the Developer of the Willows at Valley Run is asking for a support letter to include with his PHFA Application noting that the plan is cohesive with the Township Comprehensive Plan and that the Township is supportive of the project moving forward.
Commissioner Kennedy entertained a motion to sign a support letter for the Willows at Valley Run. Moved by Commissioner Evans and seconded by Commissioner Tindaro. Vote passed 4-0.
Status of Structure at 11 Brooks Lane – Ms. Denne noted that the property located at 11 Brooks Lane has been abandoned and empty for a couple of years. The previous owners dug out the foundation underneath the property. The Township has secured the property as best as they could however, with all the snow they are concerned that it is putting weight on the structure. The Township is concerned that if this structure collapses that there will be two displaced families because their homes are attached to this structure.
Ms. Denne noted that Mr. Stackhouse is going into the house tomorrow with a Structural Engineer to see what exactly the cost would be to make it safe enough to make it to Sheriff’s sale in September 2021. She also noted that the Township would like to partner with someone like Habit for Humanity or Chester County Housing Authority to put it back into home ownership. The County thinks it would be a great project for a first homeowner.
Commissioner Evans asked if this is the elevated structure with the car port underneath it. Ms. Denne noted that this structure is ground level.
Commissioner Young asked if the Township would need an income survey. Ms. Denne noted that is yet to be determined. Ms. Denne also noted that the County CDGB office would like to see the structure not demolished because it is in a Historic District.
Commissioner Young noted that he walked Brandywine Homes through their income survey so he would be happy to do it for Carver Court.
Ms. Denne noted that she has discussed working close with the County CDBG office to try and create a “Home Ownership Plan” for Brandywine Homes and Carver Court.
Cathy Callaghan of 931 Bondsville Road noted that she has no feeling either way about Mr. DeYoung’s political signs comment, which was directed towards Commissioner Young. She also noted that it is his home environment, and his personality.
Vince Rose of 135 Turnberry Drive noted that there was too much discussion on Mr. DeYoung’s political signs towards Commissioner Young, and hopes that there is no more.
Commissioner Kennedy entertained a motion to adjourn the February 11, 2021 meeting at 8:45 PM. Moved by Commissioner Evans and seconded by Commissioner Tindaro. The Board thanked Commissioner Kennedy for filling in for Commissioner Mullin. Vote passed 4-0.
Respectfully Submitted by,
Assistant Township Secretary